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Open AccessArticle

Urban Trees and Their Impact on Local Ozone Concentration—A Microclimate Modeling Study

1
Department of Geography, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, 55099 Mainz, Germany
2
Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, 55099 Mainz, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Atmosphere 2019, 10(3), 154; https://doi.org/10.3390/atmos10030154
Received: 14 February 2019 / Revised: 15 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Air Quality Prediction)
Climate sensitive urban planning involves the implementation of green infrastructure as one measure to mitigate excessive heat in urban areas. Depending on thermal conditions, certain trees tend to emit more biogenic volatile organic compounds, which act as precursors for ozone formation, thus hampering air quality. Combining a theoretical approach from a box model analysis and microscale modeling from the microclimate model ENVI-met, we analyze this relationship for a selected region in Germany and provide the link to air quality prediction and climate sensitive urban planning. A box model study was conducted, indicating higher ozone levels with higher isoprene concentration, especially in NO-saturated atmospheres. ENVI-met sensitivity studies showed that different urban layouts strongly determine local isoprene emissions of vegetation, with leaf temperature, rather than photosynthetic active radiation, being the dominant factor. The impact of isoprene emission on the ozone in complex urban environments was simulated for an urban area for a hot summer day with and without isoprene. A large isoprene-induced relative ozone increase was found over the whole model area. On selected hot spots we find a clear relationship between urban layout, proximity to NOx emitters, tree-species-dependent isoprene emission capacity, and increases in ozone concentration, rising up to 500% locally. View Full-Text
Keywords: ENVI-met; BVOC; box-model; isoprene; urban planning; air quality; NOx; green infrastructure ENVI-met; BVOC; box-model; isoprene; urban planning; air quality; NOx; green infrastructure
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Simon, H.; Fallmann, J.; Kropp, T.; Tost, H.; Bruse, M. Urban Trees and Their Impact on Local Ozone Concentration—A Microclimate Modeling Study. Atmosphere 2019, 10, 154.

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